The UNICEF Deputy Country Representative, Ms. Rushnan Murzata says digital inclusion of the female gender, especially girls, were crucial to ensure equitable distribution of wealth and development.
She stated this in Abuja at the Girls for Girls Conference and Policy Dialogue as part of events to mark the international day of the girl child.
Ms. Murzata explained that the gender digital divide had created exclusive gap across geographic lines and opportunities as such there was the need to increase investment to close the digital divide to accommodate more girls in the digital space.
The Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege represented by His Chief of Staff, Dr. Otive Igbuzor urged stakeholders and development partners to identify gaps in existing laws that needed amendments to effectively accommodate the rights of girls to access digital technology.
The President 2021 International Day of the Girl child, ,said increased investment in the ICT sector in the country would facilitate easy access of the digital space and increase inclusion of the girl child in ICT.
During a session on “the Safety and insecurity in schools; Impact on adolescents girls retention and transition in schools,” the Gender Advicer to the Inpector General of Police, AIG Aisha Abubakar eplained that the digital space had security implications and advised girls to be vigilant while using digital platforms like the social media.
On her part, the Representative of Education In Emergency Working Group, Mrs. Abiola Salihu said Nigeria recorded the highest number of abduction of learners and Education personnel between 2020 and 2021 and called for the need to consider the Gender Impact while implementing the Safe School Declaration in Nigeria.
The Director General National Centre for Women Development Dr. Asabe Vilita-Bashir, said ICT skills will ensure personal security, better access to education and jobs, financial inclusion and access to basic healthcare information for girls.
Vilita-Bashir noted the centre has trained over 500 girls in ICT in the past three years aimed at bridging the digital divide, and contribute to the growth and development of the nation.